Woman killed in attempt to set skydiving world record in Eloy - Tucson News Now

Video of previous jump on April 2. (Source: Vimeo/Mansur Mustafin)

Woman killed in attempt to set skydiving world record

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Officials were at the site where a skydiver was killed in an accident. (Source: CBS 5 News) Officials were at the site where a skydiver was killed in an accident. (Source: CBS 5 News)
ELOY, AZ (AP) -

A woman from Germany has died in a skydiving accident in Eloy where parachutists were attempting to set a world record.

"It had nothing to do with the size of the group or the aircraft," World Team spokeswoman Gulcin Gilbert told The Associated Press. "It was a malfunction of the parachute."

The accident occurred Thursday at about 7:30 a.m. during an attempt to break a world record for what is called a "formation jump."

According to CBS 5 News in Phoenix, Skydive Arizona in Eloy said the accident was the result of the skydiver's parachute releasing and malfunctioning at too low an altitude, not allowing the reserve chute to fully open.

A group of 222 people from about a dozen countries free-fall from about 18,000 feet, then come together in a formation before separating and doing another formation. They then pull their parachutes.

The skydivers jumped at such a high elevation that they needed oxygen masks in the airplane, and they hurtled through the air at speeds of more than 100 mph.

The group did not complete the formation and therefore did not set the record Thursday. World Team organized the event at Skydive Arizona, one of the nation's top skydiving locations.

Skydivers cried and hugged each other and prayed after they learned of the death.

Skydive Arizona has been the site of other skydiving deaths in recent months.

Two skydivers - from Germany and the United Kingdom - died in November as their parachutes collapsed and they fell to their deaths during an attempt to set a jump record.

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